I would sign up for races so I always had another race coming up. With less than excellent self-control and discipline, signing up for races helped keep me honest. If I always have another distance race upcoming and I tell people, I have to keep training so I will be prepared and won’t have to tell my friends I had quit. (excerpt from The Race Before Us)
DISCLAIMER: I may have completed a few 10Ks, half-marathons, and 26.2 mile races, but I still consider myself a novice runner. Any advice or “tips” that I may have are for beginners – novice runners like me. (Some might say that because of my pace – I’m pretty slow – I’m just a jogger or “recreational” runner, and not a runner at all. To them I like to say what most “real” runners say to me: “It’s just important that you are out there.” More about “real” runners at some future post.)
One of the aims of this blog is to encourage others to run (or walk) their first 5K or 10K (sometimes called “from couch to first 10K”) and enjoy the benefits of running. Hopefully, the example of an overweight, 50+ year-old man running a marathon might suggest to others that they too can “do it” – because you can. Sometimes I found that traditional running tips jump over some of the issues and questions experienced by truly new runners. In my journey (The Race Before Us) of learning to become a runner, I experienced a number of things came up that might be helpful to someone thinking about actually trying to run that first 5K or 10K. All I can say is that its unlikely you’ll be sorry if you try. And, if you do, I hope a few of my – novice – running tips might be helpful. (I will also have a real running coach do some guest posts on running tips that will be interesting and encouraging.)
The “tips” or the experiences I offer will not necessarily be in chronological order of how and when I experienced them. For instance, I got the idea for this post because I stumbled across a blogger “widget” (too hard to explain here) that allows one to post upcoming events on their blog homepage. Many runners who blog will show the name and date of their “next race” – their upcoming runner goal. This reminded me of something I did when I first started running, so I thought I’d post my own “Next Race” widget and use that posting to offer this “tip.”
As the quotation above states, I found that if you keep signing up for the next 5K or 10K (or even longer) race in your town, not only do you probably support a great charity, but you keep to your training schedule better. If you are like me – prone to be lazy and undisciplined – its motivational to know another race is coming up and you need to keep with your training. When the race rolls around, you do not want to have to tell your colleagues and friends – when they ask – that you didn’t run because you didn’t keep up your training. I didn’t want to be thought of as a quitter; you won’t want to be thought of as a quitter – so run, Forrest run!